Thursday, May 25, 2017

I Hate Fish Baked fish for those who don't like it.

I think that it is widely known in my family that I hate fish!
So, to eat it without distress, I really have to gussy it up to cover it.  I cannot say that I truly hate all fish.  I can tolerate Haddock, sometimes a little salmon.  I can tolerate most anything if it has enough hot sauce, cayenne and dry mustard.
So, Here is one way I actually like fish.
 
Oil a baking dish just large enough to hold the fish.

Mash one, or if adventurous, two cloves of garlic with salt to form a more liquid paste. 
Spread a little of the garlic on each fillet or steak, then drizzle olive oil over the fish in the pan.
  Garlic can really take over here, and it has little time to cook, so be careful.  For me all this is a plus!  I do this mashing because I really like the garlic, but also because the mashed garlic does not have to be cooked as long as chunks or even minced garlic.  some people can do all this by just rubbing the pan or fish with the cut end of a clove of garlic, but that is too insipid for me.  I live alone...what can I say?

  Chop a few small, very ripe tomatoes over the entire layer of fish. Salad or cherry tomatoes are perfect for this.

Sprinkle with scallions or minced onion.  Do not over do the onion. I use chopped greens from Grammie's walking(Egyptian) onions.

Chop 1/4 cup of black olives( the better the olives the better the dish, so the olive bar is great, but canned are OK) and sprinkle over the fish thickly.
 
Sprinkle capers(the little ones in the jar do not need to be washed, but be careful to wash large ones to remove much of the salt)  Contrary to many peoples' opinions, fish needs salt, and the mashed salted garlic and the capers are a good source, especially as the salt is often sea salt from the islands.

Sprinkle with black pepper and a few red pepper flakes and a very light sprinkle of dried oregano.

Drizzle the toppings with oil.

Cover the baking dish with foil or a cover, and bake at 400 till desired doneness...maybe half an hour.  Just check it a few times.

Uncover and serve with oiled pasta, or pasta with ROMANO cheese and black pepper.  Parmesan is too nutty flavored.
 Sicilians do use cheese with fish sometimes, but you are not making Fish Parmesan with melted cheese on top.

You can sprinkle the fish with a bit of red wine vinegar, or lemon if desired.

Pasta is often served in restaurants with just oil, with salt, with lemon or black pepper and grated cheese. Pasta con cacio e pepe is on many menus.

Tarte Tatin as I see it in France.

Make a single recipe of Pate Brisee:
1 1/4 cups flour
1/2 stick butter
1/2 t salt
1 T sugar
3T water
Chill till the apples are cooked.

Peel core and quarter 7-8 apples.  Cortland, Granny Smith or if you like them,
Golden Delicious.
I cast iron frying pan, 10 inch a similar heavy bottomed pan will work but best not
to use something that is too thin as the apples will turn to mush if too much heat
below.:
melt 6 tablespoons of butter(real butter, probably unsalted is best)on med heat.
Add 1 cup sugar when the foam subsides but before it colors.
Cook until the sugar melts in the butter(try not to stir, but it will be OK if you
must)and continue till it turns a nice amber color.  Add extra butter if it refuses
to melt.
Arrange the quartered apples VERY tightly in the caramel in a pleasing pattern with
the nice side facing down into the pan. Shingle them in if you must.
Continue to cook the caramel and apples till the apples are tender but not soft. 
Caramel will bubble up around the apples.
NO Spices, but if you cannot live without, use some cinnamon.
As the bubbling subsides, roll out the Pate Brisee till it just overlaps the top of
the pan by 14 inch.  It does not have to be neat! Or round!
Lay the pastry over the top of the apples and press down till it makes full contact.
 Tuck the excess down around the apples into the pan edge slightly...do not fuss,
it should be a bit rustic. Do not poke holes in it.
Bake at 375 in mid oven for 30 min. 
Turn over onto a platter to unmold before the caramel has time to cool...within
three minutes or so.
Serve hot or cold.  If you have Creme Fraishe so much the better.
Does not taste like apple pie.  Fresher, more appley, so choose an apple you like
the taste of.
Do not substitute pastry type if you like to be authentic, but others will work.

You can also make this by pouring the caramel in the cups of a muffin tin, putting in a piece of apple and covering with small rounds of pastry...you will have to experiment as I have never done this, but I have eaten plenty!  Put them in paper pastry cups to serve or carry.

Whip cream with a tablespoon or more of brandy, dark rum or something of that ilk.

There is no reason not to try this with pears or peaches, apricots etc.  Just to not overcook them till they turn to mush!